Tonight, the Colorado Avalanche have their second of three chances to close out the Tampa Bay Lightning and capture the Stanley Cup. They would now do it on the road instead of at home in front of their rabid fanbase. But I’m sure every Av fan would rather they just get it done tonight in Game 6 rather than risk facing the wrath of Game 7 Andrei Vasilevskiy.
Meanwhile, of local intrigue, a late-round pick of the New York Islanders keeps shining as the lights get brighter. With luck, William Dufour will continue that trend as an Islander. He is older than a large portion of the players at that level, so there is a reason for caution. But man, it is hard not to get excited about a possible diamond in the rough who just can’t stop putting the puck in the net.
- William Dufour’s Saint John Sea Dogs trailed the Shawinigan Cataractes, 3-0, at the end of the first period. So he scored a natural hat trick early in the second and added a fourth goal in the third period, and his Sea Dogs won 5-3 to clinch a spot in the Memorial Cup Finals against these same Cataractes. All his goals are in the LHH link. [LHH | Islanders | ESPN]
WILLIAM. DUFOUR. #MemorialCup pic.twitter.com/AYdBrd76tA— Canadian Hockey League (@CHLHockey) June 25, 2022
- Zdeno Chara has yet to decide on his future, and his agent announced that Big ‘Z’ will make his decision in September. [NHL]
- This Day in Isles History: The Islanders drafted Mathew Barzal (16th overall) and Anthony Beauvillier (28th overall, 2015); and they selected John Tavares (1st overall, 2009).
- This (Yester)Day in Isles History: The Islanders drafted Brock Nelson (30th overall, 2010), Scott Mayfield (34th overall, 2011), and Otto Koivula (129th overall, 2016). Other than Dufour, news is slow.
Stanley Cup Final
- It remains unclear as to whether the Avalanche get back Andre Burakovsky and the Lightning Brayden Point. [ESPN]
- The Avalanche will stick with Darcy Kuemper tonight in Tampa. Coach Jared Bednar says he “has gotten [them] to this point.” [NHL]
- Ondrej Palat is a folk hero in his hometown back in Czechia. They’re all Lightning fans, but if he leaves as a UFA, I bet they become fans of whatever team he’s on. [The Athletic]
- The Avalanche are ready to take that next step. You can see how hungry they are. [Sportsnet]
- JT Miller could be had from the Vancouver Canucks, so of course, one must wonder: Should the Toronto Maple Leafs trade for him? Inquiring minds must know! [Sportsnet]
- The Chicago Wolves, AHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes, won the first Calder Cup Final played in three years, defeating the Springfield Thunderbirds, affiliate of the St. Louis Blues. Richard Pánik wins the Calder Cup for the second time in his career. [NHL]